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Chapter 4: It's a Free Software World After All
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Chapter 4: It's a Free Software World After All


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Chapter 4 summary of Curtis J. Bonk's book "The World is Open".

Chapter 4 summary of Curtis J. Bonk's book "The World is Open".

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  • 1. HMID 6303 Current Trends & Issues in Instructional Technology Chapter 4: It’s a Free Software World After All From Curtis J. Bonk’s book entitled “The World is Open” Summarised by: Khoo Chiew Keen OUM-MIDT, February 2010 .
  • 2.
    • What does this word mean to you?
    • Can you think of any examples which are related to this word?
    • Would you offer something for nothing in return?
  • 3.
    • By offering FREE services of course!
    • They offer:
    • Free email accounts;
    • Unlimited storage space;
    • Free web searching.
    Do you know how Google and Yahoo generate their revenue in billions of dollars?
  • 4.
    • What about the word above? What does it mean?
    • How would the word “free” and “open” affect education today?
    • Answer: You will find out as you browse the following slides….
  • 5. What about education?
    • How has technology affected education today?
    • Read the article from the following links to get a brief idea on how technology has impacted education.
    • The development of the Internet and its significance for education: http://
    • Milestones in education, 50 years of education:
  • 6. Technology, Education and Resources
    • The introduction of Web 2.0 applications.
    • The Free and Open Source Software (FOSS) movement.
    • The Free Software Foundation (FSF).
    • Learning Management System (LMS).
    • Open Educational Resources (OERs).
    • Creative Commons.
  • 7. What is open source?
    • It refers to any computer software program whose source code is free to use, modify, and redistribute – typically for its licensed users.
    • An open source product is:
    • “ Is a software designed by a community of users or a consortium of organizations and institutions with a joint interest in the resulting product” .
    • Philosophy of open source software:
    • “… openness of computing code created in distributed or peer-to-peer collaborative development” .
  • 8. The Free and Open Source Software (FOSS) movement
    • Encompasses two movements: free software movement and open source movement .
    • Free software movement focuses on the philosophical freedom it gives users .
    • Open source movement focuses on the economies of peer-to-peer collaboration .
    • Both movements adapt the ‘sharing’ culture as “nearly all software that is open source is free, and vice versa”.
    • Prominent persons in the FOSS movement:
    • Mitch Kapor
    • Richard Stallman
    • Linus Torvalds
    • Eric Raymond
    • Martin Dougiamas
  • 9. Free Software Foundation (FSF)
    • Develops free and compatible replacements for propriety software.
    • Vision : Dedicated to eliminating restrictions on copying, redistribution, understanding and modification of software…
    • Goal : Develop and then distribute software using a “General Public License” (GPL).
    • “ Free” = Freedom 0: The freedom to run the program as you wish.
    • Freedom 1: The freedom to study the source code and
    • change it to do what you wish.
    • Freedom 2: The freedom to make copies and redistribute
    • them to others.
    • Freedom 3: The freedom to published modified versions.
  • 10. Hacker Culture
    • What is it and how does it affect the development of free and open source software?
    • Read more about hackers here:
    • This ‘culture’ had a firm belief in knowledge sharing and helping others , including the exploration of computer programming secrets and free access to computers and the availability of information about them.
  • 11. Mitchell David Kapor
    • Former president of the Lotus Development Corporation.
    • President of the Open Source Applications Foundation.
    • Read more about Kapor and his contributions here:
  • 12. Richard Stallman
    • Founder of the Free Software Foundation.
    • Devoted to a vision of sharing.
    • According to him, software is “a manifestation of human creativity and expression … and represented a key artifact of a community … to solve problems together for the common good”.
    • Read more about Stallman and his contributions here:
  • 13. Linus Torvalds
    • Developer of the first open source software
    • program Linux 0.01.
    • What motivates him to develop open
    • source software:
    • “ A sense of fun in doing what he loves: programming and contributing to the Internet community with usable products others could enjoy”.
    • Read more about him and his contributions here:
  • 14. Sakai Project
    • Courseware platform or system that enables individuals or institutions to place their courses on the Web.
    • Features:
    • Document distribution;
    • A grade book;
    • Discussion;
    • Live chat;
    • Assignment uploads;
    • Online testing;
    • Wiki;
    • RSS reader.
    • Read More about the Sakai project here:
  • 15. Moodle
    • Also known as M odular O bject- O riented D ynamic L earning E nvironment.
    • It is a free open source Learning Management System (LMS).
    • This LMS is created by Martin Dougiamas, a WebCT administrator at Curtin University, Australia.
    • Moodle is designed to help educators create courses online focusing on interaction and collaboration (social constructivism).
    • Moodle supports many plug-ins such as:
    • Activities
    • Resource types
    • Question types
    • Data field types
    • Graphical themes
    • Authentication methods
    • Enrollment methods
    • Content filters
    • Wiki
    • Other third party plug-ins.
  • 16. Questions to ponder …
    • Both Sakai and Moodle seem to have similar features. Nevertheless, they are two distinct educational systems. Are you aware of the difference between Sakai and Moodle?
    • Can you identify the benefits of courseware platform like Sakai and learning management system like Moodle? What do both systems offer?
    • Activity : Do some research and readings on the Web and discuss these two questions in our Ning portal.
    • Speaking of Ning …
  • 17.
    • Truth is …
    • Not everyone favours courses and pre-packaged content. It’s just plain boring for them …
    • People want to be more creative so as to decide what they want, create their own content and become contributors themselves. They also want interactivity.
    • But how?
  • 18. The age of Drupal and Ning
    • Drupal is an open source free content management system that enables a person to build his/her own personal and community homepages.
    • Ning is platform specially designed for social networking communities which allows developers to create OpenSocial gadgets and applications using technology developed by Google.
    • These applications have educational benefits and foster social interaction and knowledge sharing; for example Ning for Educators network binds the concept behind the WE-ALL-LEARN model.
  • 19.
    • Ideas in many forms are shared and disseminated through various tools on the Web i.e., Sakai, Moodle, Drupal, Ning etc…
    • So, where education is concerned, how can ideas be safe-guarded when online technologies are so advanced these days? The area of licensing and copyright of materials comes into focus now … and this is where Creative Commons come into the picture.
  • 20. Creative Commons
    • It is a non-profit organisation established by Dr. Larry Lessig in year 2001.
    • This organisation functions to expand access to online materials and also encourage creative use and remixing of these materials .
    • Creative Commons offer different copyright designations to various online materials from audio, image, video, text and other data.
    • These copyright designations help protect public and private universities as well as individuals from for-profit entities that may cheat their intellectual capital.
    • Read more about Creative Commons here:
  • 21. Open source and free software
    • The digital age is upon us. We need access to up-to-date information, share our ideas and collaborate to learn and expand our capabilities in the Web where everything is digitised.
    • With open source, free content and Creative Commons, more people will be encouraged to share their ideas and learn from each other.
    • On the other hand, as the world becomes “smaller” and technologies customised to suit our needs, how would ethics evolve to ensure that the society remains rational?
    • This will be a good topic for discussion in our Ning portal.
  • 22. Thank You.